Wind, rain, puddles and gloomy days is the winter weather forecast. But that's not all. Also forecast are some special winter skin problems, like dryness and dehydration.

Unlike the weather, these can be amended.

First, establish skin type. Then study what to do for it, and how to get rid of special problems. This way your skin will have the very best care for the winter.

How to discover your skin type

Normal skin has a soft healthy bloom and a fine texture. This skin must be taken great care of. Neglected, it can become dry.

Dry skin is fine and clear, sometimes flakes and is sensitive to extremes of temperature. It needs to be kept well moisturized as fine lines develop quickly.

Oily skin is due to over-active oil glands. The complexion looks shiny, pores get clogged and enlarged spots and blackheads appear.

Dual type skin or combination skin has an oily "T" across the forehead and down the center of the face, with dry cheeks, dry neck, and eye areas.

Skin care cleaning routine is simple and need only take a few minutes each night and morning. It is important that the care is consistent whatever your skin type. If you forget to take off the day's makeup, probably because you are too tired, that means the pores will be clogged with dirty makeup that has been there for ten hours and may be there for another eight. It does not help your looks.

Here are tips to make your skin pretty:

Normal skin routine:

This routine is the simplest of all because it has no problems.

Begin the day cleaning your face with a delicate creamy cleanser for normal skins. Use a gentle lotion for normal skin to tone, then feed the skin a with moisturizer. To give extra nourishment during the night, gently dot a night cream around the eyes and mouth.

Hints: Don't wash with soap and water. Your skin doesn't need it, and the soap will drain the natural oils. Treat normal skin as sensitive skin. This means the skin will be prone to some dryness.

Dry skin routine:

Clean the skin each morning with a gentle milky cleanser.

Never use soap and water, however refreshing it seems. Soap and hot water can cause broken veins in your skin, and excessive dryness.

Tone the skin to remove any residue, to tighten pores and stimulate the circulation. The skin tonic should not have a strong alcohol base. This will further dry the already parched skin.

Nourishing is next. First thing every day, put on a protective moisturizer to create a film over the face to stop moisture escaping.

Last thing at night massage with a rich cream to feed the skin.

Hints: Always care for dry skin with the utmost gentleness. Keep calm. Overstimulation won't help dry skin because it is sensitive and easily becomes overheated and flushed. All of which leads to broken veins.

Be sure your diet is loaded with vitamin A (liver, egg yolk and leafy green vegetables). If it is not, that will be one of the reasons for dry skin, and probably dry hair too.

Don't have baths that are too hot. Give up the lingering bath, because all the time you are soaking the skin is losing its protective natural oils.

Oily skin routine:

Wash oily skin with a mild soap or a washable cleanser. This will get rid of bacteria, the main cause of blemishes. Very oily skin can be washed three or four times a day.

Use an astringent to reduce oiliness and minimize enlarged pores. Skin still needs nourishment, even if it is oily. Repeat this routine at night, and once a week use a nourishing cream. Apply it to your face and blot excess off after 20 minutes.

Hints: When washing your face, pay most attention to the nose, forehead and chin. That's where oil accumulates.

Never use anyone else's towel and make sure that yours is clean and dry. Don't use a facecloth. It will collect germs.

Often an oily skin goes with oily hair, and dandruff goes with oily hair. Shampoo as often as you like to keep hair shining.

Try to forget chocolate, cakes, greasy foods, spiced foods and gravies. Think instead about the delights of health-giving salads, vegetables, fruits, cottage cheese, yoghurt and lean meat.

Drink lots of water. Six glasses a day is a good dosage.

And MOST important - NEVER pick a pimple.

Dual type skin:

Dual type skin does not need one set of products for the dry areas and another for the oily parts. There are products specially formulated for this kind of skin.

Cleaning is more gentle with a cream, but if oiliness worries you wash with a very mild soap.

Use a light toning lotion, and then a moisturizer for dry skin. Then blot the oily areas, forehead, nose and chin, to remove excess oil.

Repeat this at night, and use a cream on those specially sensitive areas, the eyes and mouth.

Hints: Light liquid cleansers are good for both dry and oily skins. So they are particularly helpful for combination skins. But they should be used with an effective toning lotion to absorb excess oil.

Clean with a facial cleanser twice a day and use a toner three times a day. This will keep oiliness under control and at the same time dry areas will be protected.

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